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Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73). Volume I: January. The Lives of the Saints. 1866.

January 15

St. Isidore of Scété, Priest and Hermit

HE was priest of Scété, and hermit in that vast desert. He excelled in an unparalleled gift of meekness, continency, prayer, and recollection. Once perceiving in himself some motions of anger to rise, he that instant threw down certain baskets he was carrying to market, and ran away to avoid the occasion. 1 When in his old age, others persuaded him to abate something in his labour, he answered; “If we consider what the Son of God hath done for us, we can never allow ourselves any indulgence in sloth. Were my body burnt, and my ashes scattered in the air, it would be nothing.” 2 Whenever the enemy tempted him to despair, he said: “Were I to be damned, thou wouldst yet be below me in hell; nor would I cease to labour in the service of God, though assured that this was to be my lot.” If he was tempted to vain-glory, he reproached and confounded himself with the thought, how far even in his exterior exercises he fell short of the servants of God, Antony, Pambo, and others. 3 Being asked the reason of his abundant tears, he answered: “I weep for my sins: if we had only once offended God, we could never sufficiently bewail this misfortune.” He died a little before the year 391. His name stands in the Roman Martyrology, on the fifteenth of January. See Cassian, coll. 18. c. 15 and 16. Tillem. t. 8. p. 440.  1
Note 1. Cotellier, Mon. Gr. T. 1. p. 487. [back]
Note 2. Ib. p. 686. Rosweide, l. 5. c. 7. [back]
Note 3. Cotel. ib. T. 2. p. 48. Rosweide, l. 3. c. 101. l. 7. c. 11. [back]